There are two types of people when it comes to the attitude of those seeking the help of a priest.

There are those who believe that their problems are the only problems in the world and that the priest should drop everything and run to their aid.

Then there are those who are apologetic when asking for help, who believe that there are people in the world with far bigger problems than themselves and that they really shouldn't be bothering the priest who is, no doubt, overstretched as it is.

A good priest, when approached by the latter type of person, should have them thinking the same way as the former type of person, by the end of their first conversation.



  1. Fully agree with your last paragraph. Of course, the person needing help shouldn’t ever think they can’t ask for help because the priest is too busy. Sometimes the apologetic ones need the most help (but don’t shout the loudest) and won’t ask for it because they think the priest is overstretched…

  2. That is of course thoughtful of you to say so, being a priest. But what if the priest was Christ? Would we not be judged positively if we were humble, thinking of others?

    Quite another matter is to be loved.


    Should not roses be important,
    should not roses be proud?
    Roses should be incompliant,
    costly, speaking out loud!

  3. Since I can only speak for myself, I’d say I’m definitely in the latter category. I always admonish myself for even asking for a little prayer, after I ask for it.

  4. Jesus said we should just ask God for stuff, Anders. He also seemed to favour who demanded stuff from him. That’s the closest answer to your question I can come up with off the top of my head.

    Actually this post is only incidentally about the laity. I’m attacking those arrogant priests and bishops who act as if they are doing you a favour if they deign to respond to a request for something. Who will keep you waiting for months because they are “so busy” and who get all uppitty and act all hurt if you complain about their lack of care.

  5. That is one of the things that make you a good priest and it is a great loss that people are kept from experiencing this gift in a parish context you give to the laity.